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Latest from Deeks - Note on Quinoa Lectins

By Christie Stuart Christie 6/11/2019 3:10 pm

There are about 250,000 types of lectins. Many types are not used in plant defence. Quinoa has no scientific reference to lectins for defence. Those that are in quinoa are not used in pathogen and insect defence. It uses saponins for this and globulins and albumins as storage chemicals, not prolamins as occurs in grains (such as gliadin). Quinoa’s lectins are not intensely involved with immune scarring, like the grain agglutinins are.

Pressure cooking will denature most of the lectins in quinoa, but these particular lectins are not intensely involved with immune scarring. We were more concerned with toxic saponins. Saponins are antimicrobial toxins (glycosylated phytoanticipins) found in a wide range of legumes, vegetables, and herbs. They are easily removed from Quinoa because they occur in the outer shell of the seed. Quinoa lectins aren’t found throughout the centre (endocarp) of the seed.

Quinoa is gluten-free, high in protein and one of the few plant foods that contain sufficient amounts of all nine essential amino acids. It is also high in fiber, magnesium, B vitamins, iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, vitamin E and various beneficial antioxidants. Quinoa has a low Glycemic Index which helps to avoid blood sugar spikes and hunger stimulation.

That is why we use quinoa, because it is relatively benign in its ability to scar the adaptive immune system of humans. Understand that if you don’t want contact with any plant lectins, active or not, you will have to give up eating all plants forever, including coffee and tea. That is not a sensible idea.